Thanks to finance from the Clean Energy Finance Corporation (CEFC), Warrnambool City Council will be the first in Australia to use highly efficient LED technology for a bulk changeover of residential street lighting.
According to the press release by CEFC, the Victorian council will replace about 2000 mercury vapour lamps with LEDs, thus reducing its street lighting costs by almost 70%.
“The Warrnambool streetlight upgrade is part of the Great South Coast Street Smart Lighting project which involves six Victorian councils — Warrnambool, Shires of Colac Otway, Corangamite, Moyne, Southern Grampians and Glenelg. The project received a $1.4 million grant from the Australian Government’s Community Energy Efficiency Program (CEEP), covering about half its original $2.8 million cost,” it says in the press release.
Warrnambool council was initially given approval to upgrade its lights with fluorescent lamps last year, but the CEFC extended its finance to enable the use of LEDs.
“LED is still considered a ‘new’ street lighting technology in Australia, but it is highly efficient and has a longer estimated life than other lights typically used to upgrade from inefficient mercury vapour technology,” said CEFC CEO Oliver Yates.
“The move to install LEDs makes sense from financial and environmental points of view. It also fits neatly with the Council’s key objective to be a sustainable city,” said Warrnambool City Council Mayor Michael Neoh.
The new lights use 77% less energy than standard mercury vapour street lights, and offer better colour rendering and visibility.
“By installing LED technology, Warrnambool is expecting to reduce its current street lighting operation and maintenance costs by 68%,” said Paul Brown, Managing Director of Local Government consultancy Ironbark Sustainability.